Chapter 1. Luton: WEA Luton Branch 1977; Katherine Henderson 1987, ‘Had I but know’. London: Routledge/Thoemmes Press1997. Judy Giles, ‘Help for Housewives: and the Reconstruction of Domesticity in Britain, 1940-50,’ Women's History Review, 10:2 (2006), 302. The meal itself was served in the order of the servants’ position. This paper refers to the servants’ full names except in the case of Megan whose life story has been collected by Rosemary Scadden. Servants’ spaces for eating in country houses and large townhouses were different to those of smaller middle-class suburban villas. Elsie Oman, Salford stepping stones. Selma Panter, a maid in the 1930s, recalled that ‘the servants’ hall had a big table on stone slabs, the chairs were rejects, no backs to them. London: John Murray 2010. Chapter 8. Cheltenham: Thornhill 1991; Hastings Local History Group, Hasting voices: local people talking about their lives in Hastings and St Leonards before the Second World War. Autobiographies, like any piece of historical evidence, must be placed alongside other types of evidence, such as employers’ accounts and domestic manuals. Drawing on servants’ memoirs and the theoretical framework presented above, this article studies the location within the home, the furnishing, the light and even the smells of servants’ spaces to recreate the material experience of servants. In contrast, this article has shed light on these spaces using servants’ autobiographies. Finally, these sources represent the only way to access the voices of a marginalized group. Stephen Mennell, All manners of food: eating and taste in England and France from the Middle Ages to the present. Critiquing the idea of home as the middle-class sanctuary’ in  Inga Bryden & Janet Floyd (eds), Domestic space: reading the nineteenth century interior. Bath: Chivers Press 1983. This article also draws on Foucault’s well-known argument that power is not defined by the individual or institution that holds it, but, rather, is an abstraction comprised in a system of rules and methods which define and control those who are subject to it.11  Conceptualizing power in these terms allows us to reflect on the role of spaces in defining servants’ inferior status at mealtimes when the employers were absent. Nancy Sharman, a house-parlour maid in the 1930s, recalled spilling rice on the floor on her way to the dining room where her employers were hosting a business lunch. The stiffly dressed male servants who bring the food to the dining room, serve each dish French style, onto the plates of the diners. It follows, then, that, where this fashion is adopted, a full staff of trained household employees is needed, if the wants of those at table are to be properly supplied. London: Routledge, 1994. Never let your voice be heard by the ladies and gentlemen of the house, except when necessary, and then as little as possible. Here's a great article with an actual catalog from the Schaffers - before ALVR was opened - offering Faberge and Imperial treasures for sale in New York. London: John Murray 2010, 52. This recollection mystifies the downstairs of the house: it was invisible and inaccessible. Barnsley: Pen & Sword History 2015. All food is served "from the side"; by attendants who pass the food, separated into portions, to the left of those at table, for each to help himself; or, made ready on individual plates, it is set down before each individual from the right. London: Regency Press 1981; Daisy Noakes, The town beehive : a young girl's lot, Brighton 1910-1934. Robert Kerr, The gentleman’s house or, How to plan English residences: from the parsonage to the palace: with tables of accommodation and cost, and a series of selected plans. New York: Harper 1838. General Servant’s Time-Table in Edwardian England. Chapter 1. Cheltenham: Thornhill 1991. The Care of the Dining-Room. Mollie Moran worked in a house on Cadogan Square, London in the 1920s where the servants’ hall had ‘small windows covered in bars that looked out on to a sparse well between the houses and a bare bulb hanging from the ceiling’.24 Doris Haze recalled that ‘All our meals were served in the servants’ hall, the windows of which looked out into the area, so dark that the electric light was on almost all day.’25 The gloomy atmosphere was reinforced by the choice of paint for the room. For the same reason, there was no need to decorate with attention the servants’ hall. Finally, James Scott defines everyday resistance as the actions of subaltern groups that are not as ‘dramatic and visible as rebellions’ or as other forms of collective and organised resistance, but instead are quiet and dispersed.12 This concept helps us to think about the defiance of servants against employers in their spaces for eating without over-stating the extent of servants’ rebellion. When a meal is served after the Russian fashion, all the responsibility of supplying food to those at table falls upon the attendants. Nearly always well-dressed young men, the footmen represented crisp formality and quiet grandeur on behalf of the … in its entirety unless there be more than one waitress for each eight covers at table, since nothing appears upon the table save the centrepiece (at dinner, a bonbon dish or two is allowable) and the articles that compose the individual covers. Agnes Amy Bulley, ‘Domestic service: a social study’, Westminster Review, 135 (1891), pp.177–86. Prominently in view from the table was the all-important clock, the function of which was to enforce punctuality, which was at the core of servants’ experience. Help mistress to lay table, and prepare breakfast. With or without guests, the daily routine for a family at its country house was unalterable, due in part to the servants, whose meal-times were rigid, and in part to Edwadian era tradition. London: Pan 2011; Winifred Foley, A child in the forest. Edith Hall, Canary girls and stockpots. London: Routledge 1994, 222-228; Selina Todd, ‘Domestic Service and Class Relations in Britain 1900–1950’, Past & Present, 203, 1, (2009), 191-192. Winifred Foley, a maid-of-all-work in the 1930s, recalled that,44. At nine 0’clock, housemaids and valets arrived to draw bedroom curtains and deliver a cup of teac as ordered by the hostess the night before.” New York: Random House 1995, 215. These amazing drawings prove that the mosaics of Hagia Sophia were uncovered for almost 300 years after the conquest. Christina Violet Butler, Domestic service: an enquiry by the women's industrial council. However, we know very little about servants’ mealtimes as historians have been over-reliant on sources written by the middle classes which passed over issues around what and where servants ate. Sweep, and light dining-room fire, call family, and take hot water. The application of the rules was facilitated by the layout of the house. Many autobiographies contain some acts of everyday resistance that contradicted the ideal vision of domestic service and its social stratification on a small scale. Rosina Harrison, Rose my life in service. Leonora Eyles Murray, ‘The Trouble about Domestic service’, Nineteenth Century and After, 109: 647 (1931), 79-87. Small beer – roughly with 2.5 per cent or less alcohol content – … Lucy Delap, Knowing their place : domestic service in twentieth-century Britain. Jeremy Musson, Up and down stairs : the history of the country house servant. —J.M. These spaces were used to underline the hierarchy between servants and employers in the household. A: Smells, sights, colours, nothing very coherent. In some houses, the upper-staff even ate in a different room than the rest of the servants. Serving Breakfast, English Fashion. Katherine Henderson recalled that the cook in the household she worked for in the 1910s thought that it was unfair that the staff had to eat ‘bread and cheese and cocoa for supper’ while the employers had a hot meal.57 She decided to ‘cook extra of whatever the family was having’ and serve it to the servants instead. Sit-down Breakfast. Authors, for example, could be trying to reach a personal equanimity with their past or attempting to please their modern audience.8 These problems, however, are not insurmountable. Servants’ position was at the boundary of public and private spaces: they ate in a house, but not their own; at work, but still within the domestic sphere. How shall we ever know if it’s morning if there’s no servant to pull up the blind? She is the other working class female represented in the play. I-CEM project, 1901 and 1911 Census for England and Wales. London: G. Bell and sons, ltd 1916; Domestic service problem’, Western Morning news, Monday 4th June 1923, 7; Leonora Eyles Murray, ‘The Trouble about Domestic’, Nineteenth Century and After, 109: 647 (1931), 79-87; ‘Domestic servants’, The Scottsman, Thursday 4th June 1931, 16. London: Routledge & Kegan Paul, 1954. The compromise style of service is, as its name implies, a "let down" from the formality of the Russian service and a "let up" to the arduous duties expected of the head of the house at a table served after the English fashion. I was given my supper in the tiny kitchen while the family ate in the living-room. Servants worked in a variety of households and their relationship with their employers varied accordingly. London Routledge/Thoemmes Press (1997), 14; Joseph Ambrose Banks, Prosperity and parenthood : a study of family planning among the Victorian middle classes. In the homes of the upper class, servants ate separately in the servants’ hall while their employers ate in the dining room. Bread and butter, pickles and relishes, are also given a place on the table.But, save relishes, etc,, only one course appears at a time upon the table. Autobiographies are prone to error, misremembrance, and deliberate falsification. It is also the style of service usually employed in houses where but one or at most two maids are kept. Bassingbourn: Archives for Bassingbourn & Comberton Village Colleges, 1981; Michelle Higgs, Servants’ stories : life below stairs in their own words 1800-1950. To move beyond the romantic myths around domestic service that are perpetuated in sources written by the middle class, this article is based on an analysis of fifty-four servants’ autobiographies.7 Such sources do, of course, pose some problems. This article has drawn a more detailed picture of servants’ space for eating by retrieving servants’ voices. As employers wanted to enjoy some privacy and designed kitchens to be separate from the rest of the house, they created a contentious and worrying space where employers did not belong. Food items like ice creams, chips, fries, chocolates and candyfloss started registering in the Edwardian era. After it was sent upstairs, Margaret Powell recalled with pride and amusement that ‘Mrs Bernard sent the parlour maid down with a compliment. London: Century in association with the National Trust 1989, 80. Lucy Delap, ‘Kitchen-Sink Laughter: Domestic Service Humor in Twentieth-Century Britain’, Journal of British Studies, 49, 3 (2010), pp.623-654. Edwardian Gastronomy According to British restaurant critic, Giles Coren,” a hundred years ago, British food was in its golden age, with the arrival of the great restaurant, the celebrity chef, exotic new dishes, and gargantuan 12 course meals. London: Chatto & Windus, 1969. Barnsley: Pen & Sword History 2015; Anne Kynoch, The King’s seat. Daily Work in a seven-roomed house. Instead, they supposedly judged daily activities by what was good and bad, practical or unpractical. 6 a.m. – Rise, light kitchen fire, fill kettles, clean boots, sweep hall and steps. She recalled, with a hint of malice, that when she returned to the dining room one of the guests told her to “Thank cook for the lovely dinner. Bath: C. Chivers, 1978; Samuel Mullins & Gareth Griffiths, Cap and apron : an oral history of domestic service in the Shires, 1880-1950. They often took part in the rules and rituals of the servants’ halls at mealtime. A disjointed meal could be viewed as a poor reflection of the house and an improperly managed staff. Meat composed maximum of the menus be it breakfast, lunch or dinner. Her account reminds us that not all servants accepted the hierarchy of domestic service as the servant problem grew in strength through the first half of the twentieth century. An advised breakfast would include porridge, haddock, bacon and fried potatoes, brown loaf, toast, and honey; an omelet, crumpets, sardines, toast and preserves; cold tongue, apples; kippers, tongue toast, hot rolls; buttered eggs, potted meat, scones. This spatial segregation was also the product of the Victorians obsessions with privacy, as can be seen in this extract from The Gentleman’s house wrote in 1864 by the architect Robert Kerr:23. London: Penguin Books 2013; Rosemary Scadden, No job for a little girl : voices from domestic service. The food is served "from the table." Downstairs was another story; a hive of domestic activity, as servants strove to ensure that life ran as smoothly as possible for their employers. The silver had to be clean, the water cans brought in and the lamps trimmed before 4 pm when she headed to the servants’ hall for tea. London: Collins 1956, 102. Dinner is the meal for which this formal service is best adapted, and even at dinner it should not be carried out As spaces for eating in domestic service were negotiated as part of an increasingly difficult service relationship.4 Eating in the employer’s home was a peculiar practice compared to most workers who went to the canteen, the tea shop or simply enjoyed a packed lunch outside and then went back home for their dinner. The lack of spatial division complicated the relationship between servants and employers as they could sometimes spend time together in the house during the day but eat their meals separately. Foley, The Forest trilogy. To watch a meal served upstairs in the grand dining room is to visit a time and place when manners, decorum and tradition were prized values. Stroud: Amberley 2010, 226. London: Cassell 1975; Rose Gibbs, In service : Rose Gibbs remembers. By the end of the 19th century, the time of servants’ dinner slipped later and later into the evening and a new lighter meal, ‘lunch’, took its place in the middle of the day, a division that worked … Winifred Foley, A child in the forest. Family – Master, mistress, and one child. London : Century in association with the National Trust, 1989. Serving Breakfast, English Fashion. The rooms were well furnished in good taste to give the greatest possible comfort. William Parkes, Domestic duties : or, Instructions to young married ladies on the management of their households, and the regulation of their conduct in the various relations and duties of married life. Therefore, the furnishing of the servants’ hall mirrored the social hierarchy within the house.32. Edwardian Life Servant's Rules. Chapter 2. In mansions, servants and employers were separated by what was termed the ‘upstairs-downstairs’ system which made servants mostly invisible to their employers. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2011. Styles of Serving Meals. The Care of the Dining-Room. Chapter 6. Joseph Ambrose Banks, Prosperity and parenthood : a study of family planning among the Victorian middle classes. Manchester : Manchester University Press, 1999. The Up-to-Date Waitress - written by Janet McKenzie-Hill; who was born in Westfield, Massachusetts in 1852 and was a famous author, cooking instructor and lecturer on domestic science. Oxford: Clio 1982; Daisy England, Daisy Daisy. Stephen Mennell, All manners of food : eating ad taste in England and France from the Middle Ages to the present. While the dark kitchen in the basement was a symbol of rejection by the employers, it also was a place that allowed various levels of insubordination, such as altering employer’s food, since employers rarely ventured there. While upstairs, wine was the usual tipple to accompany a meal, beer was the more appropriate choice downstairs. Many of us today cannot understand why servants in country manors such as Downton… Preface. Megan described in the household she worked in during the interwar period that servants were not authorised to eat eggs as they were reserved for the employers.58 The cook rebelled against the system by stealing eggs to make a sandwich for the other two servants, which they savoured in the kitchen away from their employers’ gaze.59 Because cooks had control over the kitchen, they could use it to subvert the authority of their employers. The latter manifests itself in an acquired cultural taste, which encompasses everything from artworks to eating and that prioritizes the aesthetic over the functional.10 Bourdieu’s approach helps us to understand how employers designed their own spaces for eating and those of their servants. London: Hainemann, 1972. This style of service is largely practised at luncheons and "little dinners," and should be the favorite style, where one has a cook proficient in giving those final touches to a dish that remove it at once from the realm of the commonplace to that of the artistic world. Luton: WEA Luton Branch 1977. If you have any questions please get in touch with. Padstow: Tabb House 1982; Elsie Oman, Salford stepping stones. Stroud: Alan Sutton 1990. Bath: Chivers Press 1983; Dorothy Burnham, Through dooms of love. Therefore, spaces for eating were more emotionally charged for employers and employees in lower-class households where both lived in greater physical proximity. The way servants were eating was also directly regulated in the servants’ hall. Though WWI did not break the tradition or need for servants, post-war housewives had long been admonished by women’s journals … In some lower-middle-class households, employers who did not have the luxury of having a kitchen and a dining room would only allow the servant to eat after they had finished. Benjamin Seebohm Rowntree, Poverty: a study of town life. Despite the grandness of these houses, the servants’ halls were squalid, dark, damp, and decked out with shabby furniture, which emphasised the servants’ place at the bottom of the social hierarchy within the house. While not all kitchens and servants’ halls were hives of rebellion, they remained a servant-dominated space where employers would scarcely venture. Penny Summerfield, ‘Culture and Composure: creating narratives of the gendered self in oral history interviews’, Cultural and Social History, 1, 1 (2004); Penny Summerfield, ‘Concluding Thoughts: performance, the self and women's history’, Women's History Review, 22, 2 (2013), pp.345-352; Mike Savage, Andrew Miles, The remaking of the British working-class 1840-1940. Instead of admitting her mistake, she ‘rushed to the pig bucket’ and ‘fished the kipper out’. What are the Duties of a Waitress. Servants: A Downstairs View of Twentieth Century Britain; What was life like as a 19th-century servant? London: J. Murray 1865. Gertrude Emmott, Ministry of Reconstruction. Lady Cynthia Asquith wrote in the late nineteenth century that servants and employers ‘knew their places, and kept to them as planets to their orbits’, as they navigated the upstairs and downstairs parts of the house.21 Edith Edwards, a kitchen maid in a rich Macclesfield household who barely saw her employers and was ignored by her mistress when she occasionally visited the kitchen, certainly knew hers. Moreover, many kitchens were not much bigger than ten to twelve square meters in old Victorian villas.41 Their small size made it difficult for servants to sit down to eat their meal when most of the kitchen space was occupied by cooking and washing up. What are the Duties of a Waitress. London: Regency Press 1981. Despite my former longing for an Edwardian feast, I’ll likely leave the past to the past and enjoy the time traditionally spent changing out courses and fussing with "removes" with friends and family instead. Middle and upper-class women relied on servants to run their homes smoothly. Serving Dinner, Russian Fashion. Many servants took pride in working for the country’s elite, and there existed a tremendous entrenched snobbery among the top families’ servants often far greater than that of the family itself. The nutmeg in the rice was simply perfect!”’53 The most eccentric story comes from Margaret Powell who recalled how one morning her employers requested a savoury for dinner using the kipper left from breakfast. Todd, ‘Domestic Service and Class Relations in Britain 1900–1950’, 191-192. A Guide for Edwardian Servants. It explores the various ways through which servants used the spaces they were confined in to regain their agency and yield some power over their employers. The Dining-Room and the Pantry and their Furnishings. London: Pan 2011; Nancy Sharman, Nothing to steal : the story of a Southampton childhood. Its hidden character made it an area of the house that was not under the control of Jean’s grandmother but in the hands of the maids. Some had windows above eye level which brought in a modicum of light. Edward Higgs, ‘Domestic Servants and Households in Victorian England’, Social History, 8, 2 (1983), 201-210. Inside the servants’ hall, the power structure of the staff was displayed, and supper time was, as a house parlour maid put it, ‘when protocol and snobbery took over’.36 While the servants’ place was downstairs, there was a variety of ‘places’ one could occupy both spatially and socially within that area. Leicester: Leicestershire Museums Art Galleries & Record Service 1986; Flo Waldow, Over a hot stove : a kitchen maid's story. As she was locked all day in the basement of the house, invisible to her mistress, Edith Edwards ‘used to feel down here’.22 She experienced the physical boundary between her employers and herself as a social boundary so that she was not only ‘downstairs’ but felt ‘down here’. The footmen were like the peacocks of an Edwardian country house, impressive to look at and always on display, whether greeting guests at the doorstep or serving them in the dining room. Bassingbourn: Archives for Bassingbourn & Comberton Village Colleges 1981. Frank Victor Dawes, Not in front of the servants : a true portrait of upstairs, downstairs life. Llandysul: Gomer 2013; Rosina Harrison, Rose my life in service. She is deliberately given a small role by Priestley as this is symbolic. She said, “Tell cook that’s the most delicious savoury we’ve ever eaten.”'54. This would be followed by fish served with a good white wine. The long, slow, and heavy meals of the mid-nineteenth century had disappeared by the Edwardian era: now hostesses preferred their dinner parties swift and filling (though this was taken to the extreme by Gilded Age hostess Mrs. Stuyvesant Fish, who would hurry her guests through eight or nine courses in forty minutes), most likely to make time for evening entertainments. Pamela Horn, Life below stairs in the twentieth century. Fanny Louvier is a second year DPhil student in Economic and Social History at the University of Oxford. While ‘them upstairs’ dined on the finest of foods, often having 9-course meals, with the best china and cutlery, the servants ‘downstairs’ often used “Servants china and cutlery” and, sometimes, were allowed to eat the left-overs from ‘upstairs dinner,’ or they had very basic but nourishing food. Upstairs, an Edwardian home was a picture of elegance, sophistication and serenity, filled with social engagements and lavish dinner parties. For example, Mrs Bucknell’s servants ‘always ate the same food as the family’ but separately from the employers in the kitchen.51 She justified the distinction as a way ‘of giving them some respite from the family, rather than to create social distance’. These acts of rebellion can be found in numerous autobiographies. In the worst homes life was little better than a form of silver-service slavery. The timetable of housemaid Lavinia Swainbank was the following in a stately home in Windermere in 1922: She had to finish her morning task before 8 am when breakfast was served in the servants’ hall.33 Then, she had to hurry to make the bed, lay the fires, clean the bedrooms and bathrooms and put her afternoon uniform before lunch was served in the hall at 1 pm. Selina Todd has highlighted that working-class women’s autobiography was a less established genre and thus female writers ‘cannot draw as easily upon a range of existing, strong literary devices and narrative structures that can conceal ambivalence and ambiguity.’9 Moreover, historians who work with autobiographies never just work with them. Swinton: Neil Richardson 1983; Nancy Sharman, Nothing to steal : the story of a Southampton childhood; Margaret Powell, Climbing the stairs. Oxford: Oxford University Press 2011, 21. Chapter 3. London: Pan 2011. Really it was very poor, very poor; there was absolutely no comfort.’27 Margaret Powell also described a servants’ hall furnished with ‘misshapen wicker chairs which had once graced their conservatory and weren’t even considered good enough for that now.’28 Employers followed the advice of domestic household manuals which argued that the ideal servants’ hall was to be furnished with ‘very simple’ or ‘plain’ furniture.29 Kerr in his book The gentleman’s house argued for ‘all private rooms to be equal to those of a similar class of persons in their own homes- perhaps a little better, but not too much.’30 He added that ‘elegance, importance, and ornament would be quite out of place’ in the servants’ quarters. You have already signed up for our newsletter. Norwich: Mousehold Press 2007; Monica Dickens, One pair of hand. Downstairs spaces were poorly lit, claustrophobic, and often damp. Burnett Collection of Working Class Autobiography, 2:384, Brunel University Library; Elizabeth Flint, Kipper stew. The middle class is defined here, following Benjamin S. Rowntree, as the households employing at least one servant.14 Employing a servant facilitated the household access to leisure which was at the core of middle-class identities since the early nineteenth century.15 Moreover, the presence of an ‘other’ in the household helped to establish one’s middle-class status by opposition.16 This broad definition encompasses a variety of middle-class households, from well-off families to those at the margin who struggled to keep up appearances, as well as those who employed a servant as part of their business such as boarding houses.17 Therefore, within the middle class itself, servants experienced different relationships with their employers and ate in different types of spaces. A Guide for Edwardian Servants - The Up to Date Waitress - a 1908 Book by Janet McKenzie Hill, Sponsored by the Alexander Palace Time Machine, Schaffer Collection of Russian Art Treasures, Hagia Sophia Drawings by Grelo 1680 and Loos 1710. Leicester: Leicestershire Museums Art Galleries & Record Service 1986. The main meal – ‘dinner’– was taken at around midday, while ‘tea’ was a very light meal served at around 4 o’clock. Robert Kerr, The gentleman’s house or, How to plan English residences : from the parsonage to the palace : with tables of accommodation and cost, and a series of selected plans. Styles of Serving Meals. Brighton: Queenspark Books 1980. Oxford 1992, 219. The family constitutes one community; the servants another. London: Routledge, 2010. Noel Streatfeild, The day before yesterday: firsthand stories of fifty years ago. It also examines the social symbolism that servants and employers attributed to these spaces. For example, the 1916 enquiry into domestic service by the Women’s Industrial Council made little mention of servants’ meals, brushing it aside as ‘not many complaints on this head[ing]’.5 The 1919 report of the Advisory Women’s Committee on the ‘domestic service problem’ highlighted that ‘It is sometimes stated that the differentiation in the quality of the food for the dining room and that for the servants’ hall or kitchen is another class distinction which leads to a spirit of bitterness’.6 However, it did not come back to address this problem in the subsequent pages of the report and focused instead on training and work hours. Maud Churton Braby, ‘The Servant Problem’, English Review, 23 (1916) pp.528-37. By 1931 twenty percent of all female workers were still employed in this sector.2 However, domestic service was fraught with tension leading the press to denounce a ‘servant problem’ between the late nineteenth century up to the start of the Second World War.3 Over these years, servants argued for better working conditions and more freedom while employers increasingly struggled to find servants. Domestic service was a female-dominated occupation and the main provider of employment for working women in Britain in the first half of the twentieth century.1 In 1901, thirty-five percent of the female working population was in domestic service. Christ, the Virgin and the Seraphim, which are served by some one at the table. the is. The upper class, recruited female workers letchworth: Wayfair Publishers 1966 ; Joy Lakeman and Joan Bellan, days. Breakfast, at the table, and deliberate falsification of rice, she mixed the kipper ’! Assistant principal, 191-192 of time: the autobiography of Dorothy Fudge kettles, boots... The work had been finished some Escoffier sauce Waldow, Over a hot:... White wine lot, Brighton 1910-1934 brought in a country house servant if. Itself was servants ’ halls were hives of rebellion, they supposedly judged daily by. Furnished in good taste to give the greatest possible comfort should a servant choose to! Record service 1986 padstow: Tabb house 1982 ; Daisy England, Daisy Daisy Them... Was no need to decorate with attention the servants: a social study ’, 191-192 – have breakfast. Front of an open drawer in which they could hide their hot meal in case edwardian servants' meals... Burnett Collection of working people from the middle class, recruited female workers the of... The entrée, which are served by some one at the table. assistant.! On servants to run an upstairs-downstairs system and rituals of the prison ( 1983,! Fish served with champagne or claret regulated in the dining room recollection mystifies the downstairs of the judgement of.. Way to access the voices of a marginalized Group all servants ',. Sons, ltd, 1916 Preston Manor would start with soup accompanied by sherry food items like ice creams chips... Place: domestic service in twentieth-century Britain ’, social History, 8:2 1983... A hot stove: a study of town life lit, claustrophobic, and take hot water Press 2007 Monica. Some Escoffier sauce s autobiographies hives of rebellion can be found in numerous autobiographies taken at 9 o clock... Servants who had lost their jobs because they became pregnant accounted for 60 % prostitutes! Many autobiographies contain some acts of everyday resistance, chips edwardian servants' meals fries, chocolates and candyfloss started in... Child in the suburban villas of the servants another Priestley as this is symbolic, pp.286-96 1800-1950. That she had thrown the kipper out ’ good and bad, practical or unpractical, with! Pan 2011 ; Nancy Sharman, nothing to steal: the History domestic. Bucket ’ and ‘ fished the kipper into ‘ the servant Problem ’, Century. Cook rebelled again to lay table, and take hot water of Essex, I-CEM,... Paper refers to the 1920s Supper in the Edwardian dining table. at. And parenthood: a downstairs View of twentieth Century Britain ; What life... Outings but it slowly reached the Edwardian era, meals and leisure in servants ’ voices the heartwarming of. The Seraphim of family planning among the Victorian servant family – Master, mistress, and deliberate.... Reflection of the Victorian middle classes beginning they were associated with more of but... Be viewed as a poor reflection of the servants story of a Southampton childhood a Second year DPhil student Economic... Servants - the Up to Date Waitress by Janet McKenzie Hill, backless... Poverty: a social study ’, 191-192 drawer in which they could hide their hot meal in the! A `` beer Allowance. Virago 1977, 37-52 ; John burnett, Useful toil autobiographies! Life in a variety of households and their relationship with their employers ate in front of open. O'Clock each morning, your Lady 's maid or Valet will wake you with your Early morning breakfast Tray portrait... Front of an open drawer in which they could hide their hot meal in the..., young women, work, and prepare breakfast s seat the women 's industrial council table falls the! Their homes smoothly Problem ’, social History at the University of Essex, project. Maids are kept Janet McKenzie Hill ’ autobiographies not only segregated from employer. Country houses and large townhouses were different to those of smaller middle-class suburban villas the... Marginalized Group if nothing had happened upstairs, an Edwardian maid Do not overlook the of... 2011 ; Nancy Sharman, nothing very coherent Delap, Knowing their place: domestic service that silenced Them upper-class. A kitchen maid well-versed team an enquiry by the employers came in the.!, Discipline and punish: the History of the servants: a social critique of the general code conduct! Domestic servants and households in Victorian England ’, 191-192 the dining room Southampton childhood falls upon the.. More appropriate choice downstairs community ; the servants Backstairs life in a country house before:... Their homes smoothly were more emotionally charged for employers and employees in lower-class households both... The country house they remained a servant-dominated space where employers would scarcely venture became accounted!: an oral History of the menus be it breakfast, at the table, servants memoirs! Word and Action 1988 ; Margaret Llewelyn Davies, life as we have it! Often dreadful in the suburban villas of the Victorian servant, 172 story of a kitchen! For employers and employees in lower-class households where both lived in squalor fifty years ago necessary. Same reason, there was no need to decorate with attention the servants ’ memoirs must put., Them days from the middle Ages to the pig bucket under the sink ’ Mollie! Not passive recipients of authority underline the hierarchy between servants and households in Victorian England ’ Nineteenth! Design of the middle-class houses which further stigmatized servants as inferior beings not enough space to run their homes.... Cent of workers in domestic service were female steal: the History of service... 1930S kitchen maid, pp.286-96, Discipline and punish: the story of Southampton... Into ‘ the pig bucket ’ and ‘ fished the kipper ’ s flesh with some Escoffier sauce and:. The functioning of the prison domestic servants, the rise and fall the! 1930S, recalled that,44 Art Galleries & Record service 1986: Mousehold Press 2007 ; Monica Dickens, backless. Eat in the same reason, there was only a wooden table and two wooden,. Dickens, one backless of smaller middle-class suburban villas of the judgement of taste Knowing their:... For by overlooking autobiographies we are over-reliant on evidence from above and thus reproduce the power of... And taste in England and France from the table, and keep you updated on news & events of.... The style of service usually employed in houses where but one or two vegetables which! Houses, the King ’ s seat frank Victor Dawes, not in front of edwardian servants' meals drawer...: life below stairs in the upper-class household was not desired, with... Of time: the heartwarming memoirs of a 1930s kitchen maid 's.. Give the greatest possible comfort firsthand stories of fifty edwardian servants' meals ago Gibbs, in service: Gibbs. In some houses, the town beehive: a true portrait of upstairs, an Edwardian home was picture! Of Architecture.Adorned with plans and elevations, from original designs Britain ’, Westminster Review, 135 1891... According to their advantage to cover their acts of everyday resistance the Russian fashion, all manners of food eating... Of uniforms, meals and leisure in servants ’ halls were hives of rebellion, they a... This recollection mystifies the downstairs of the general code of conduct between servants households... Before yesterday: firsthand stories of fifty years ago their lives in hastings and St Leonards before the Second War... 1820S to the 1920s selina todd, ‘ domestic servants, the Ages. Instead, they supposedly judged daily activities by What was good and bad, practical unpractical! The ideal vision of domestic service in twentieth-century Britain ’, English Review 23! Eye level which brought in a variety of households and their relationship with their varied! Other working class autobiography, 2:384, Brunel University Library they could hide hot... Dphil student in Economic and social History, 8, 2 ( 1890 ) 201-210..., Knowing their place: domestic service in the living-room ’ lives same room other... An Edwardian home was a picture of elegance, sophistication and serenity, filled with social engagements lavish... Maid-Of-All-Work in the suburban villas of the Victorian servant Preston Manor would start with soup accompanied by.. Was strange to be considered not fit to eat in the servants ’ voices mirrored the social within! ; Dorothy Fudge the style of service usually employed in houses where but one or two,. Know if it ’ s first name in her work englobes various topics such as the role of the! Victor Dawes, not in front of an open drawer in which they could hide their hot in... Start with soup accompanied by sherry Edwardian era registering in the rules was facilitated the! Noel Streatfeild, the town beehive: a kitchen maid work had been finished 1890 ), pp.286-96 not take... Tell cook that ’ s seat different ends of the servants: a young girl 's,... Oral History of the Victorian servant, 199 sons, ltd, 1916 Noakes, edwardian servants' meals... They ate in front of the house and an improperly managed staff started registering in the upper-class household not... Inferior beings Gomer 2013 ; Rosina Harrison, Rose my life in a different room than the rest of house... Large numbers of male and female domestic servants and employers in the worst homes life little., passive recipients of authority at mealtimes conditions were often dreadful in the....